Bullying is a problem that affects ALL of our children - those who bully, those who are victimized, and those who are witnesses to interpersonal attacks.
Bullying is a simple term for a collection of complex social dynamics. Taking a one size fits all approach has not worked. We need a fresh look at the evidence which highlights the overwhelming importance of school climate and culture, the covert and overt aspects and social dynamics of bullying, the power of the bystander, understanding the increased vulnerability at transition times and the need for building a repertoire of appropriate responses to bullying incidents.
Our Positive Behavioral Intervention Supports (PBIS) program R.O.C.K.S. is changing the social climate of our school. By developing a common language across the school community we are able to set clear expectations, reward positive behavior, and track problem areas.
Bullying is often situational and usually happens at the same times and places. A key element of bully prevention is to identify the spots and times when bullying is most frequent and then boost adult supervision at those locations.
Most kids, most days are well in tune with R.O.C.K.S., but sometimes a student may have LOST their R.O.C.K.S.! At Union Ridge we teach kids to STOP. WALK. TALK. in response to a fellow student who has lost R.O.C.K.S.!
1). Ask for the behavior to STOP.
2). If the person does not stop, WALK away.
3). If the behavior continues or is physical or threatening, TALK by telling an adult.
Students need to understand that telling is not “tattling.” Telling is done to protect yourself or another student from getting hurt. Tattling is done to get someone in trouble. This is important for by-standers to know as well. We teach our students to look out for each other and encourage leadership in positive ways.
Statistics on the rates of bullying and cyberbullying vary between studies due to the measures used, the questions asked, and the population studied. However, the general consensus is that one out of three children are bullied at school, in the neighborhood, or online and that one out of three children bully others. No child is immune - kids of every race, gender, grade and socio-economic sector are impacted. But it doesn’t have to be this way. As parents you have the power to help reduce bullying.
Please check out these resources for additional information and tools to help communicate with your family. We are in this together!